Strong earthquake rattles buildings around Japan

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
March 14, 2010 14:41

 
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TOKYO — A strong magnitude 6.6 earthquake hit off the eastern coast of Japan on Sunday, rattling buildings across a broad swath of the country, including the crowded capital.

There were no reports of casualties, with only light damage to structures near the epicenter, according to local officials.

The quake hit at 5:08 p.m. and was felt most strongly in central Fukushima prefecture about 210 kilometers northeast of Tokyo, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency.

"It was fairly strong, but didn't knock over anything in the office," said Ken Yoshida, a town official in Naraha, one of the hardest-hit areas. He said an earthen wall in town was partially toppled.

The earthquake was centered about 80 kilometers off the eastern coast at a depth of about 40 kilometers, the meteorological agency said.

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